Complete spinal cord injury (SCI) is a devastating occurrence afflicting millions of people worldwide with no available treatment for functional motor recovery. At Insight, we were able to provide neuromodulation of motor nerve roots in a case with complete motor and sensory paraplegia. By using a retrograde trans-foraminal approach to implant electrodes close to L2-S1 motor nerve roots bilaterally, we were able to stimulate those nerves and induce precise movements at the joints of the lower extremity in a T5 complete spinal cord injury case (add video link). We believe that our approach shows the potential of the procedure as a rehabilitation system. We think that this approach is coupled with precise computer algorithms and accompanied with rehabilitation programs, holds promise for functional recovery of incomplete SCI patients. As resources, time, and expertise are put into developing the current techniques to the next level, a new era of mobility for paralyzed patients may be ushered in.
For more information, please read our paper which describes inducing locomotor function by direct electrical stimulation of motor nerve roots using retrograde advancement of leads with trans-foraminal approach in complete SCI patient.